Belper Bill Busters: Volunteering August

Bored Teenager? Get Them Volunteering This Summer

If you’ve got kids, especially teenagers, the summer holidays can be a long, long six weeks. Once the novelty of no school and endless free time wears off, boredom can set in. If you want to get them doing something useful, while also avoiding being on the receiving end of restless-teenager-syndrome, why not encourage them to get out there and sign up as a volunteer? Something to do for them, peace and quiet for you, a helping hand for somebody else – it’s the perfect combination.

It will give them experience and skills to add to their CV. These days, employers are looking for much more than high grades. They want people who have experienced the workplace, practised the skills and, perhaps most importantly, been proactive. Even if the world of work seems far into the future for your child, there is no time like the present for them to start building up that experience. The sooner they start, the more impressed those employers will be when it comes to it.

It will give them a picture of what they do – or don’t – want to do in the future. There’s no better way to figure out what you enjoy doing than by actually doing it. We all know that sometimes reality doesn’t live up to our dreams and it’s better for your kids to realise it sooner rather than later. Of course, they may absolutely love it, in which case they’ll have a potential path to follow and, with any luck, the inspiration to drive them forwards.

They’ll be doing something good for the community. Whether it’s helping out in an office, pulling weeds in the local park or serving in a charity shop, volunteering is the ideal way to perform a selfless good deed. With the economy being so uncertain at the moment, organisations are looking for ways to save money and would surely benefit from another set of hands.

They’ll meet new people. Swap hours in front of the TV for practising key socialisation skills and making new friends – they’ll thank you for it eventually!

A really useful website for finding volunteer opportunities in your area is do-it.org. Type in your postcode on the homepage, adjust the distance you’re willing to travel and you’ll have a list of fun activities for your young person to get involved in! Another is volunteeringmatters.org.uk which works in much the same way. With so many opportunities out there, it’s really easy to find something that suits.

By Adriaan Van Wyk

If you or someone you know is worried about getting a job, CAP Job Clubs could be the way to go for practical advice and guidance. There are currently over 160 clubs across the UK, providing lessons on writing your CV, conducting yourself in interviews and being confident in your abilities, to name a few. CAP Job Clubs has recently celebrated its 1,000th member finding work since 2013 – it really does work! To find your nearest club, visit capjobclubs.org or called 0800 328 0006 for free.

Claire Meese

Webmaster

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